Week 5 TNFECSDC Training Recap

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Week 5 was a good week.  I was able to complete all of my scheduled runs for a total of 40 miles.  This is very high mileage for me.  And it’s going to keep going up.

After dealing with back spasms and missing a run at the end of Week 4, I started Week 5 with a scheduled 4 mile run and I ran very conservatively and knew that if things didn’t feel good I would just go home.  It went ok and helped to loosen my back.

Tuesday was another 4 mile run.  Nothing exciting.  I just got it done.  Thursday jumped to 6 miles and I decided that even though some sidewalks still have snow I had to leave my neighborhood.  I ran through the hospital and to a neighborhood on the other side and was able to string together enough streets and trails without running the streets in my own neighborhood.  Thursday went well – I was able to keep up a faster pace.  The weather on Thursday was a preview of the weekend weather.  It was cold and windy.  I think that kept me motivated to hurry up and get it done.

Yesterday I was scheduled for a longest ever run – 16 miles.  (A few more of those longest ever runs are coming up….this is exciting and gives me something to look forward to.  At the end of each run I can celebrate a new distance.)

The outdoor temperature was frigid….beyond frigid.  It was 19°F but felt like something in the single digits.  The wind was brutal.  I had plans to meet Kim again because that has been working out really well.  I love running with her.  I started early to get in my extra miles before we met.  From the trail access point I decided to go west into the wind.  My plan was to run 2 miles west and then turn back east and head 2 miles past the starting point so that when I got back to the starting point I was at 8 miles.  When I realized how bad the wind was I became nervous about my timing and decided to only go 1.5 miles past the starting point when I was heading east.  So I was back at the starting point after 7 miles.  By then I had seen some running friends who were there for the Saturday Distance Training Program.  I also saw one of the coaches sitting at the starting location.  I checked the time and decided I had just enough time to do the 8th mile and then meet Kim so I headed west for half a mile and then back to the starting point.  The timing worked out well.

For my early miles I ran most of it on the horse trail which is a mixture of gravel and dirt.  In some places it also adds extra rolling hills.  Kim and I stuck to the paved trail and ended up running just over 4 miles together.  As we were finishing one our friends was about to pass us.  I asked how many miles she had left.  She was planning on doing two more but was easily convinced to do 3 more.  That left me with just under a mile to finish on my own.  I am so grateful for wondering running friends.  I could not do this training without them.

Bright socks make you feel warmer!
Bright socks make you feel warmer!

Today I was able to hit the trails for a 10 mile run.  I had been planning to go to the race course but I saw a picture from last week showing that it was washed out.  I was concerned there would be too much ice for a comfortable run so I decided to run trails from a closer location.  Also the temperature today was even lower – a huge 7°F when I started.  I think the windchill was actually negative but the wind speeds were lower so I actually felt more comfortable.  I tried not to stray too far from my car just in case I got too cold.  I ended up on trail that seemed interesting and I wanted to keep exploring so I went about 3.5 miles from the car before turning back.  I knew I needed to add a 3 mile loop to get the full distance so I took a chance on the trail that led to the lake and it worked out almost perfectly.  The end of the run was hard.  I was tired.  My legs were heavy.  I hiked a lot.  This is probably a good simulation of the race though.  I know that’s the point of the back to back runs.  I need to learn how to keep moving on tired legs.  I kept telling myself to be relentless and to keep pressing forward.  One step at time.  The sections I hiked were getting longer but I convinced myself to run short sections whenever I could.  Overall I was pleased with the run and super happy to be on trails in the woods.




3 thoughts on “Week 5 TNFECSDC Training Recap

    Meagan said:
    February 17, 2016 at 7:36 pm

    Great work this week! It’s such a high to have a good week like that, and it really gives you a confidence boost. That’s great that you should be able to get out and run on the race course at some point before race day, I would love to be able to do that! You’ll have to fill me in on any secrets I should know beforehand ;-)

    Debbie @ Deb Runs said:
    March 8, 2016 at 10:14 am

    Are you running the North Face full or 50K? I’m hoping to cheer Meagan on and possibly run a few miles with her, so hopefully, I’ll see you there! Happy training!

      Susan responded:
      March 8, 2016 at 11:55 am

      50k! I’m a little bit scared – going from 13.1 miles to a 50k is a big jump. I’ve been spending lots of time on trails though and I love it. I hope to see you out there!

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